By Bob Gibbons
This movie struggles to get started. It begins with characters – the Dark Elves – where it’s tough to decide which is worse: the costumes or their acting. The dialog is in a made-up language that has a hard, guttural, abrasive sound. The Elves’ home may well be a desolate realm; it looks more like a warehouse, somewhere in Los Angeles. And the Aether, their supreme energy force, looks like gallons of cheap red wine, shot in slow motion. But then we go to Asgard, where Thor and Odin and other super-heroes live, and a plot begins to take shape. It involves something called the Convergence, which happens every five thousand years, and it involves Jane getting the Aether in her bloodstream and the evil Malekith, one of the few Dark Elves who is not fully computer-generated, deciding to get the Aether and attack Asgard. And then Thor – in a huge surprise fully revealed in the trailer – asks his evil brother Loki to help him. Can Thor trust his brother? Do you care? Is your mind numb just from so many unbelievable characters? Can you still feel your extremities? Do you foresee a big battle coming, most of which will take place in the computer? I may not be your best guide to exactly what happened because at some point I dozed off. But, there are a few laughs and a bit of heart along the way, despite the fact that Jane is really too short for Thor, and at several points the special effects threaten to take complete control of the movie. But in the end, the good guy wins. I think. He’s the one with the hammer, isn’t he?